I’ve got it. Imposter syndrome. There I’ve said it.
Chances are, you’ve got it too? Feels crap doesn’t it?
- Do you worry you’re not good enough?
- Worried you’re going to get found out?
- Feel out of your depth?
The good news is that Imposter Syndrome doesn’t have to hold you back.
In this Blog, I’m going to cover:
- The most important thing we ALL need to learn about Imposter Syndrome
- What is imposter syndrome?
- What triggers imposter syndrome?
- How can we manage our imposter syndrome using the Be. Do. Have. Framework
- More ideas to help manage imposter syndrome
- Is Imposter Syndrome ever a good thing?
- Other resources to help with Imposter Syndrome
What is Imposter Syndrome?
The short answer is feeling not good enough.
All wrapped up in feeling:
- Out of your depth
- Not skilled enough
- Experienced enough
- Fear of being discovered that you’re not good enough
- Convinced that one day someone is going to call you out as a business owner
- That fab result was just good luck
- That lovely compliment – they didn’t really mean it
What Triggers Imposter Syndrome?
Yup! What you say to yourself in your head.
‘Who do you think you are?’
In each and every one of us is the desire to be liked, approved of, to be good enough, to not fail, look stupid, to be accepted.
When your inner-voice, self-talk or chatterbox pipes up accept it’s not a conscious decision.
This chatterbox is programmed to kick in because its job is to keep you safe.
I’ve learned to respect my chatterbox.
One day if I’m faced with a life-threatening situation, it’s them that will trigger my fight or flight.
We’ve got our cavemen ancestors and their fear of not belonging to a tribe to thank for all this.
Not being in a tribe, meant you were less likely to survive.
And we carry those same fears today.
How You Can Manage Imposter Syndrome?
I’ve been doing research on this and using myself as a work in progress, because as you know, like you, I suffer from Imposter Syndrome.
To make mindset changes, it’s an inside job.
We start with us and our thoughts.
The stories we tell ourselves.
You Tell Yourself Who You Are
And that can keep you stuck or move you forward.
What we tell ourselves we are – we believe.
What we believe then influences us in what our capabilities are.
What we believe our capabilities are impacts our behaviour.
Which then creates our environment – what’s going on around us.
Our business, our relationships, our well-being and our health.
Our Thoughts Are Illusions
They only exist in our heads.
And they can keep us trapped or raise us up.
Change Your Mind By Changing Your Thoughts
Ever been listening to the radio and a rubbish song comes on. You change it.
Watching TV and a programme comes on you don’t like the look of. You change it.
Your mind is no different.
The BE. DO. HAVE. Model As A Way To Manage Imposter Syndrome
The ‘Be. Do. Have.’ model is a powerful framework.
It starts with you creating a clear picture of the results you desire.
If you don’t know what the goal is, how do you tell if you’ve achieved it or not?
Once you’re clear about what you want and why you want it, most of us ask ‘what do I need to do?’
When the question you need to ask is ‘who do I need to be?’
Put it another way ‘what kind of a person would achieve this?’
Who do I need to be to kick Imposter Syndrome to the kerb today?
One way to explain the BE and the DO and the HAVE model is in what your goal is.
A goal has two parts to it: the WHAT and the WHO
- WHAT you want to achieve (or HAVE)
- WHO you need to authentically BE to make it happen
Let’s say you’ve set a goal to get 25 new clients in the next 6 months.
To get there you have to BE committed, focussed, responsible, organised, motivated, excited and confident enough to behave in a certain way and to take action and implement what needs to be done to achieve it.
You have to BE the person doing the right kind of doing to make what you want to HAVE happen.
- Who would you BE
- What would you DO
- How would you feel
- If you already HAD <insert goal>
How To Use The BE.DO.HAVE. Model To Manage Your Imposter Syndrome
It is not what do I need to HAVE before I can start, or what work do I need to DO… but who do I need to BE?
This is an example of how I used the BE.DO.HAVE MODEL TO HELP ME MANAGE MY IMPOSTER SYNDROME
I was due to have a call with a new client.
Imposter syndrome struck.
‘I’m not good enough to help!’
This is what I did.
- I recognise Imposter Syndrome. (it can sound like ‘who do you think you are, do that later and do this easy-peasy non-scary thing first, cancel it now, it’s not ready to go out yet wait a wee bit longer. It can feel like sweaty palms, dry mouth, feeling sick, light-headedness..)
- Accept it’s normal. It’s that part of my brain that’s job description is ‘keep Tracey safe at all costs.’
- Say ‘Hello you. Thanks for looking out for me but I’m doing this anyway. You know I can do this so come along for the ride and I’ll keep you safe.’
- Ask myself “Who would I be, what would I do, how would I feel if I’d already come off the call knowing I’d helped my client?”
- Do the thing.
- Write about it in my journal, do my happy dance and thank my inner –voice for coming along for the ride and tell it I’m already looking forward to the next one. (because the fear will always bubble up as I face new challenges and opportunities).
Managing Imposter Syndrome Is Ongoing
There’s no magic wand.
It’s a work in progress.
Daily Habits To Manage Your Imposter Syndrome
As well as using the Be.Do.Have Framework I keep a journal. You can read more about how I do this and how it’s helped me move my business forward here.
In my journal, I write at the top of the page ‘See things as you want them to be not as they are.’
This reminds me of who I need to become to achieve what I want in life and for my business.
Then in my evening journal I write ‘I hope I get to know myself better tomorrow.’
Because being honest, we’re always unfurling.
More Ideas To Help You Manage Your Imposter Syndrome
Recognise your self-sabotage.
Imposter syndrome loves it when you criticise yourself.
When you become your own bully.
Be kind to yourself.
Remind yourself every day what you have to be grateful for.
Record the good stuff
Keep a record of all the fab stuff people say about you.
And look through it – regularly.
Call it out
When Imposter Syndrome strikes, tell it to do one – OUT LOUD!
Surround yourself with fab people
Be with those that lift you up and can help you when Imposter Syndrome raises its ugly mug.
Talk about it.
Stop comparing yourself to others
Remind yourself that what you see on social media is others show-reel.
Their best bits.
Chances are it’s happened to them.
You’re not alone.
Get comfortable being uncomfortable
You’ve heard ‘A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing will ever grow there’, right?
With every new challenge we have and breakthrough there’s another one waiting in the wings.
So with each new challenge your NEW COMFORT ZONE will be there, waiting for you until your new challenge comes.
Is Imposter Syndrome Ever a Good Thing?
It lets you know you’re challenging yourself.
As a business owner, there’s always something new to experience, explore and challenge us.
Our Imposter Syndrome can help keep us on our toes.
Encourage us to learn new things.
- We all feel like imposters. Including the successful people.
- Be the best you can be
- Don’t freeze. Keep going
- Ask for help and advice
- Be grateful
- Improve yourself and learn
- We never conquer it so manage it
‘Realize that everyone that you think is perfect feels like they’re not good enough, too.’ Alessia Cara
As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been working on my Imposter Syndrome. Here are some of the fab resources I’ve found super useful.
James Wedmore http://mindyourbusinesspodcast.com/podcast/178
Mike Cannon-Brookes https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNBmHXS3A6I
Susan Jeffers – Feel the fear and do it anyway https://www.amazon.co.uk/Feel-Fear-Anyway-Indecision-Confidence
Ryan Holiday – The obstacle is the way https://www.amazon.co.uk/Obstacle-Way-Ancient-Adversity-Advantage
I’ll always be a work in progress and know that the more we talk about Imposter Syndrome the better it will be for all of us.
If you know someone who suffers from Imposter Syndrome and you know they’d find this useful, please share.